Monday, January 14, 2008

Charismatic pastor to divorce again?

Evangelical church on downward spiral

The Evangelical church continues its downward spiral, even here in South Africa. Those in other countries, like America, must not think that only the evangelical church in America is losing its grip on what is right and true. No, it is happening all over the world to the evangelical church!

Ray McCauley, pastor of one of South Africa's largest churches--Rhema, divorced from his wife Lyndie in 2000. Just a year after that he married another woman, Zelda Ireland, a former model. This was Ireland's third marriage!

Now, it seems, this marriage is in trouble too!

What is going on in this case is not clear yet. However, it seems that Ray McCauley dug this hole for himself. As a so-called "man of God," he should have known what the Bible says about divorce and remarriage. It took him just a year after divorcing his first wife, to marry his second wife.

He made crucial mistakes in marrying this woman. Let's look at the practical first. The alarm bells should have been ringing exceedingly loud in his ears. First of all, she had been married twice before. Did he not think that the only common denominator in her first two failed marriages was her? There were two failed marriages, and she was involved in both of them! Second, she has three children of her own, all from different fathers. Last, if my calculations are correct, based on the ages of the children given by the Sunday Times, and the amount of years she was one of his congregants, she had both of her divorces and at least one illegitimate child while she was a member if his church! Strike Three!

Biblically, he had no recourse for marrying this woman. The Bible is clear on the issue of divorce and remarriage.

One does not have to read far into the New Testament to run into the subject of divorce. Jesus said, "whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery." (Mt 19:9) Naturally, the one who has gone through divorce and the one contemplating divorce will look for all kinds of excuses to justify their divorce.

However, the case is clear against those that divorce. "Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so." (Mt 19:8) Jesus set the parameters within which divorce could take place. Except for sexual immorality, divorce would be a no-no. Paul adds one more parameter for divorce. When the spouse is an unbeliever and wants a divorce, "the brother or sister is not enslaved." (1 Cor 7:15) But, notice how Paul frames his argument. The believer should never seek the divorce. While the unbeliever wants to remain in the marriage, the believer should remain married to the unbeliever. The believer is only freed from the covenant of the marriage when the unbeliever seeks the divorce.

So, the Bible is very clear about the issue of adultery. It is when a married person has sex with someone he is not married to. When someone remarries, they commit adultery. Unless of course the divorce was as a result of the previous spouse committing sexual immorality, or an unbelieving spouse that wanted the divorce.

Coming back to Ray McCauley and Zelda. I do not know the circumstances of her two divorces, but chances are (I am merely speculating here) that at least one of her divorces was an unBiblical divorce, according to Jesus and Paul. From my knowledge of Ray and Lyndie's divorce, it certainly was an unBiblical divorce. Neither of them (according to their own testimonies) is an unbeliever. Further, according to my knowledge, neither of them committed sexual immorality. Therefore, their divorce was unBiblical and certainly was not sanctioned by Jesus or Paul.

As a result, Ray McCauley is in an adulterous relationship with Zelda McCauley (nee Ireland) according to Matthew 19. Incredibly, here is a man, head of the largest charismatic church in South Africa, and also the head of the IFCC (International Fellowship of Christian Churches), in an adulterous relationship!

Apart from McCauley's marital woes, in 1996, he decided to move away from Johannesburg where his church is. He did not move into the next town to still be close to his church. No, that would be too simple! He moved 600Km (375mi) away to Umhlanga, on the north coast of Kwazulu-Natal, about 20Km north of Durban! How in the world can a man be a pastor to a church in any way when he lives 600Km from his church. Isn't it just too convenient? He just does not have to do the work of a pastor! He only has to preach. And the money comes rolling in!

The last point I want to make about Ray McCauley is that he is part of the Word-of-Faith (WOF) clan. I have written about WOF before in a series called "Heresies in the church," and it is such a serious error that I believe it to be heresy. The fact is that preachers that teach these heresies, like McCauley, Joyce Meyers and others, have been accepted large scale into the evangelical church and scores of evangelical book stores.

The fact is, the evangelical church does not have the backbone to call a spade a spade, and will therefore not call preachers like this heretics. And if they will not call them heretics, why would they bother with holding McCauley accountable for his adulterous marriage?

The evangelical church is indeed on a downward spiral!

29 January 2010 - Although the divorce did not happen at the time of this post, it is now 2 years later, and it seems like it is definitely going to happen!


Anonymous said...

Why am I not surprised? The man is clearly a false prophet and the Bible says many things about them - merchandising the Word of God, having a love of money, preaching another Gospel, etc. 2 Timothy 3 is very clear about these so-called christians.

I belonged to this man's church for many years - and couldn't stomach any of his sermons, nor the hypocrisy, nor the shallowness and artificialness - they clearly don't practise what they preach. Ray McCauley and his congregation are clearly apostate christians who are glued to the world.

Anonymous said...

Then why did you stay 'for many years' ?????

Needless to say whatever you think .. hundreds of people meet Christ every single month at Rhema Seems we should really be praying for Pastor Ray as perhaps many of your relatives would not be going to Heaven if he had not so faithfully accepted the call ...

Anonymous said...

Has anyone thought about the fact that Ray McCauley DID NOT initiate the divorce in any of these cases but ONLY tried to reconcile?? What happens when the other party is adamant and you do what you can to get it right? Its easy to throw stones .....

Anonymous said...

And who are you to judge????
James 4:11:
11 Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters.[a] If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law. But your job is to obey the law, not to judge whether it applies to you.

Anonymous said...

Let it be !!

Let the leaders who are running these megachurches fall, and let the people who are under them be freed from the lies that they having been exposed to.
Being a christian has nothing to do with going to a church like Rhema or what the pastor did or didn't do.
I don't give a sh*t what Ray McCauley did or didn't do. Stop looking to people like him for your guidance and answers. He is no different to you and me as is not called by God to be who he is acting.

Anonymous said...

Brother anonymous has said that McAuley did not initiate the divorces and the women were at fault. This is the poorest excuse that I have heard since wel this afternoon when JZ said the power crisis was the unexpected result of too much development.

There are people who have had discussions with the women concerned and they feel that the women are running away as a result of an A type personalitytat is too strong and possibly abusive. Lyndie did not do adultery and she is not the flighty type. I believe that she just needed time out from Mr Bossy boots and he got upset and gave her no option. She is still faithful and will not say a word against him, but he still fires forth with borderline slander about the poor woman in the media. The same goes for Zelda. Youse guys have all the ammo that you need to slag her off courtesy of MacAuley's media machine but Zelda, like Lyndie, has kept quiet about the real problems that they have experienced. Think out f the box, why do these women keep running away from him

Anonymous said...

Think about it.......

It is eazy to judge the degree that you havent been through, let us see all judgemental and critical people respond when they themselves go through the same experience..people like commenting so much on issues they are clueless day when you go through the same experience i wish to hear what you will comment to your own self,God will judge Pastor Ray not ideologicaly people.u are caught up in the technicality of Pastor Ray's situation,for him it is real and all it is to us is a disease we can diagnose but he[Pastor Ray] knows the pain, fustration and hurt he has endured ..Let us keep quiet and let God be Judge

William Dicks said...

So, just because I have not been through a divorce, I may not have an opinion about what is going on in this man's life? So, because I have not used drugs, I may not have an opinion about the efrfects of drugs.

Subjectively, I have not gone through it. But, objectively, the Bible has spoken on the issue, quite definitively, I might add.

I do not need my experiences to make an informed statement on anything when the Bible is very clear on it!

1 Ti 3:2 says, "Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife."

Ray does not seem to be above reproach, nor is he the husband of one wife.

Anonymous said...

1 Corinthians 5: 12 & 13

12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you.” NIV

Paul said that we must judge those in the Church. There are hundreds or thousands of people believing that sin is OK, just repent and go on as you were before.

McCauley has disqualified himself in terms of 1 Tim 3 and I suggest anonymous reads this chapter.

1 Tim 5:19& 20
19 Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses. 20 Those who sin are to be rebuked publicly, so that the others may take warning.

McCauley's mentor Kennith Hagin has done the same thing, so has Ray Bevan and others will follow if verse 20 above is not enforced and McCauley removed from the Church as a lesson to would be copycats.

1 Tim 5:21
21 I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

This verse speaks to the leadership who should not show partiality because he is their friend as well as their meal ticket.


angie007 said...

I was shocked and sad to hear that pastor Ray is having problems again, I have currently been living in London for 8 years, but prior to that my family and I attended Rhema for 16 years and am proud of it.

Yes I agree that divorce is condemed in the bible and yes as the leader of the church it doesnt look great but we have no real clue what the reason is behind this or even what happened with Lyndie in 2000. Are we really that sad to make a paster the focus of water cooler gossip? Are our own lives that pure that we can cast the first stone?

The shame and embarrassment this man and his family are going through must be horrible and I sure would not like it to be happening to me.

God knows what is in the heart of men and I actually believe God is so great that if Ray and the elders of Rhema were stealing money, shaking people down for cash in the church (ha, ha), leading people astray and blah, blah, blah God would have or even a person would have exposed them many years ago.

Rather pray for the man and his family or turn your attention to something more constructive.

Anonymous said...

This woman is a HARLOT! The bible says you KNOW them by their fruit .. wake up everyone! Three husbands, two children out of wedlock and not from the husbands! All of this she did as a member of Rhema church over the 20 something years and NOW .. she is PASTOR ZELDA, first lady of Rhema? Preacher ..?? He thinks this is GOD .. are you NUTS! She was still married when he and his first wife separated! What a quick divorce she got? Wow .. a chance at the Pastor? She got him now everyone suffers ...nuts!

Where will it all end and it WILL END like all her other conquests!

Conning, evil, coniving, manipulating ..

Never mind 'Kiss and make up' rather ... KISS OF DEATH!

Ray get rid of her .. please before she takes you, the church and all those who have served so loyally down!

Everything I have ever read about her is about spending! Shoes, shoes and more shoes!

She trashed an office at Rhema on Friday and cussed at all the staff calling them 'bloody little cows' Nice talk Pastor Zelda, have another bottle of wine! Or why not go to a club for some time out?

Ray you are deceived and need to time in a monestary to get you out of this horrific confusion!

I see now they have reconciled, on what terms? Oh easy one .. a trip to Dubai! Shopping, shopping! Well the girl had nothing if she divorced so she may as well go for it .. after all .. its only a matter of time! Come on you guys what game are you playing! This is disgusting ..

Anonymous said...

As far as I know 'Zelda' is the name of a witch!!!

William Dicks said...


I am no Ray pal, and neither am I partial to Zelda, but what are you insinuating with "'Zelda' is the name of a witch!!!?"

Comments like these are not constructive and hold no logic to it!

Frost said...

Ray is not a demon or a false prophet,and Zelda is not a witch they are both backsliden people who have made some very bad choices, both very selfish who think of themselves and not the church or the impact of there behavior on the church, but we live i a world of Zuma, Clinton, and McCauley, at the age of 58 what is going to do for a living so ujnless Rhema do something, they have the Pastoral cvouple they deserve

Anonymous said...

I wonder why there seems to be so much trouble at Rhema, people like me are gone, leaders are gone, Pastors are gone, and there is only one common denominator Ray McCauley, there is a basic flaw in the man, he used to say himself "if you have been bankrupt 3 times maybe the bank is not to blame" or he would say "if you have been divorced a few times maybe the women is not to blame"

The man needs help, he is extremely abusive, anyone who has been to Rhema has seen or heard him at some time abuse people on the platform, I will never forget the day he screamed at Pastor Gordon and grab a paper from him in front of the whole congregation, and Pastor Gordon just smiled, this man needs help.

Let's pray that he will find his peace

Numbiman said...

Wow! I stumbled across the article about Ray's impending divorce (now apparently off again!) whilst on one of the South African news sites looking for news on the current state of electricity supplies in the country. Quite frankly I'm a little astonished that anyone is astonished at all: everyone in the entire international Rhema movement, actually, no, make that the entire Evangelical movement .... hmmm, on third thoughts make that the entire christianity and religions of all types ... all of you who believe for one moment in the tripe you've been fed about a deity, his incarnated son (shudder) and some kind of spooky presence of the two (or should that be three) of them, all of you are daft enough to believe all that rubbish in the first place, you should hardly be surprised at how he has justified all his going's on.

Face it, there is no god, christian, muslim or otherwise, and the bible and other allegedly authoritative writings are nothing but the confused ramblings of those who were deceived by the nonsense before you were, and were stupid enough to commit it to writing. Making a marriage last has buggerall to do with being religious - marriage started as a civil ceremony and was hijacked by religion. Pray all you like - there's no one listening, it won't make any difference other than convincing yourself you're making any difference. There is no god .... so in the end, it doesn't matter, really it doesn't, that Ray has messed up yet another marriage.

William Dicks said...


No god?! Seems like the atheistic community discovered some great secret here!

Come on, Numbiman! You want us to believe that because you believe there is no god, there is no god! Why should we believe what you believe?

While the majority of people in all of time have believed that there is a god, you want us to believe there is no god.

Not that the majority is always right. We see that even in politics.

But, the fact remains, if there is no god, I lose nothng when I die, but if there is a god, you lose everything when you die!

I would rather err on the side of caution than being fool that says "there is no god!" (Ps 53:1).

"The stupid man cannot know; the fool cannot understand this: that though the wicked sprout like grass and all evildoers flourish, they are doomed to destruction forever;" (Ps 92:6-7)

Yet, even while mankind runs itself silly against this type of god denial, Jesus came to earth to die for sinners just like you and me.

Your denials and claims to the contrary, the fact remains that Jesus did indeed walk the earth 2000 years ago and did indeed die on a cross in Jerusalem.

Why did He die? Mankind has transgressed God's law from the beginning, and without God being appeased for that transgression of the holiness of God, all mankind was doomed. Yet, in the midst of sin, God, with love for mankind, which He created, decided to send Jesus to die on the cross in the place of sinners, to make atonement for their sins.

Further, it is only in faith in this great and marvelous work of God that we can be reconciled to Him!

You still have a chance to turn to God.

Don't delay.

The day of salvation is today!

Anonymous said...

To: Numbiman, or dumbiman or whatever

So you are a bright spark, you have discovered the answer to the world’s problems, hey?

All they people of the whole are following ‘some’ form of a God and result in wars between them. But you know better.

It is like little Johnny’s mother said when watching him in the parade: “Only MY Johnny is in step, everybody else isn’t”

The Bible says in 1 Cor 1:18

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise;
the intelligence of the intelligent I
will frustrate.”

You cannot understand spiritual things so I won’t explain. You are dying on the inside and need to be rescued.

Yours statement: “all of you are daft enough to believe all that rubbish in the first place”

I would rather be daft and believe in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit than NOTHING to believe in with no hope of life in heaven hereafter.

Be little “Johnny”, your Mother loves you and ironically so does God even if you don’t believe.

If you don’t believe in the “law of gravity”, does that make you ‘right’, test it and see.

Anonymous said...

To Numbiman
I have just been to Church and have prayed for you as I am sure all born again Christians will do when they read your sad "wow" statement.

God will reveal himself to you. Be wide awake.

Numbiman said...

Hi William
Invoking Pascal's wager is probably not the best way to convince anyone of how sure you are of what you believe. Either you believe completely or you don't, you can't fence-sit just to cover all your bases, as it only conveys the message that you're not entirely convinced of the existence of god either.

You also said, inter alia, :

"Your denials and claims to the contrary, the fact remains that Jesus did indeed walk the earth 2000 years ago and did indeed die on a cross in Jerusalem."

That is a rather bold assertion to make: can you prove it?

Even if you could prove it, and yes, I am aware of the body of evidence about the historical Jesus, all it would prove is that there was a historical person called Jesus who walked the earth some 2000 years ago. It does not prove the existence of god.

Regarding the "evidence" pertaining to the existence of the historical Jesus, it is, at best, tenuous, and very definitely circumstantial. It definitely does not constitute conclusive proof that a historical Jesus ever existed, nor does it back any of the claims made for him in the bible.


Numbiman said...

Filly dear ....
Seems you were so excited by my post you completely forgot how to string words together to form a coherent sentence!

"All they people of the whole are following ‘some’ form of a God and result in wars between them. " is not only grammatically incorrect, but makes no sense at all, even allowing for some excitement in the typing.

And just for the record, yes, I have in fact discovered the answer to the world's problems! It is not as complicated as you might suppose either, and does not require belief in fairy tales about bearded deities who love to kill little children, and are not powerful enough to do away with evil without some meaningless theatrical gesture of crucifying yet another person on a cross. It is a lot simpler than all that, and actually does not require anyone to suspend their grip on reality.

Also, you can't make the assumption that I do not know about spiritual things: you don't know the first thing about me, and clearly think that your definition of "spiritual" is normative for the rest of the planet. Its not. Get over it.

Dying on the inside indeed - that is just soooooo clich├ęd. Where did you get that line? Once again, you don't know me and have no idea. Once again, your definition of "spiritual" is not normative for the rest of the planet: get over it.

As far as your next statement goes:
"I would rather be daft and believe in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit than NOTHING to believe in with no hope of life in heaven hereafter."
Why is it that we have to believe in an afterlife? Is the current life really so bad that you just want to get out of it? Talk about being spiritually dead ..... Life is there to be lived and celebrated, not to be escaped from. Is it so terrible to understand that there is no afterlife of any sort and that what we have right here and now is so so precious that we should savour every nanosecond of it?

As for "If you don’t believe in the “law of gravity”, does that make you ‘right’, test it and see.": that is just the dumbest thing I've ever seen in writing. No one "believes" in the law of gravity. Gravity is a measurable and quantifiable force which all material in the universe is subject to. Read the words "measurable" and "quantifiable" - look them up on if you wish. You don't need to believe in gravity: it is just there and does not require belief or faith of any kind. Your "god" on the other hand, is neither measurable nor quantifiable, and as such requires us to suspend our grip on reality and believe in something that just has no reason: what reason is there for a belief in a deity? What can your god do for me that I cannot already do for myself? What proof do you have for the existence of your god? You christians get all uppity when someone points out how incredulous your beliefs are, and yet for all the shouting, no one in human history has ever proved the existence of god in the same way as many many millions of people prove the existence of gravity each and every day. You, not me, have cited gravity as an example: now show me similar proof for the existence of your god.

As for praying for me, that is very sweet, but completely pointless, other than making you feel a little better. One day you will awake and realise that all these years you've been talking to no one, and that the god you used to believe in is a cruel vindictive child killer.

Peace ...

Anonymous said...

To Numbiman
Keep on as you are, I will still pray for you, it will make me feel better to do so.

William Dicks said...


Pascal's Wager is not there to convince others of how certain you are about what you believe. It is there to evoke uncertainty in others in the midst of their unbelief.

I am certain of what I believe.

The point is that you do not want to believe in a god, of any sort.

Be that as it may. I do not have the time to answer back and forth, so I would challenge you to go to Stand to Reason.

Look for their Content Categories on the left and also visit the Links they have on their site.

May God's grace yet reach your heart!

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